Jennifer's Lyme Disease Fund, Can't Make It Alone

For: Jennifer Steidl
Seattle, WA
Organizer: Jennifer Steidl
$750
of $10,000 goal.
Raised by 5 donors
7% Complete
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The Story

The time has come my dear friends and family that after many years of battling illness I am starting a personal fundraiser page.
This has been a bittersweet journey because alongside the years of sickness, pain, isolation, trials and everything that comes with chronic illness, there have also been blessings along the way and continual deeper revelations of my God who walks with me every step of the way.

It is with humbleness and humility that I am starting this much needed fund, a lifeline really that may end up being an answer to prayer. Where I am today is realizing how much I need help. I am still in treatment, seeing good doctors, getting  IV's every other week along with all my other therapies. I go through what I call "good cycles" and "bad cycles" which can each last weeks or months. In the bad cycles I am barely surviving and there is little left of me. On the good cycles I feel a bit like my real self again and I am able to see friends and get a taste of normal. I work part time, and I feel intense guilt over this and want to get healthy enough to do more. A short list of things I deal with daily are fatigue, chronic edema, digestive issues, pain, cognitive issues and other symptoms.... These ebb and flow depending on many factors. But in the mean time I literally cannot pay my bills and debt has mounted up. This should not bring me the stress, fear and tears that it does, but they do get the better of me. I am leaning on my heavenly Father and learn to do better all the time. But neither do I want to be like the man in the illustrative story who is sitting on the roof of his house as the flood waters come, asking God for deliverance and turning down the neighbors in boats who are able to help Him.
It is with this prayerful spirit that I am seeking help as the floodwaters threaten to overwhelm me and I know I do not have the strength to swim.


Short history:
Myself and my family have battled chronic illness for decades, and going into the full myriad of history would be overwhelming. Our family medical bills have run over 300,000. We have been dealing with mold biotoxic illness and Lyme, possible heavy metals and other things. My situation now is that I am approximately 3 1/2 years into comprehensive Chronic Lyme treatment. I am including in this not only treatment for the Lyme (Borellia) itself but all the co-infections, hormonal disruptions, toxins, biotoxic mold illness, POTS, MTHFR, increased intestinal permeability....and other challenges of putting Dumpty together again. I guess the bottom line is when the dominoes start falling all over due to a long-term illness there are lots of pieces to put back together. I am blessedly in good hands but the battle goes on.

Links for info:
A Guide To Understanding The Struggle

Why Aren't You Better Yet? The Pressure To Heal

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on May 6, 2017

Posted on May 6, 2017

As many of you know I have had some progress in health and have been winning little battles along the way, but some things persist: autoimmune disease (mast cell overactivation disorder, etc.), and all the symptoms that go with it: chronic inflammation and pain, flare ups and food intolerances, P.O.T.S., chronic fatigue, edema, neurological issues.....

Holly and I are still digging away at getting to the bottom of why some things aren't getting better. Holly has been having some pretty scary symptoms including brain inflammation, intermittent loss of vision, horrible fatigue and other symptoms.
We have some excellent health care practitioners who are amazing and doing all they can, and treatments and meds continue to be expensive.

Yesterday there was a breakthrough; I saw one of my doctors to follow up on a test I had run a couple weeks ago; it actually went out of the country to a university that is doing some groundbreaking testing. Not only are they finding things labs in the US are not, but they are developing specific treatments to kill what they find. Apparently what I learned is that most labs here will only test for what is on the requisition, and nothing else, even if they find something they can't identify it isn't reported. So because they don't do this kind of intricate testing in the US there is a doctor here in the states working with a doctor overseas at this university (who actually used to live here in Washington!). In any case several things showed up which are serious, but it's good news because it would've gone undetected otherwise. I have an elevated white cell count, which is nothing new because that has shown up before, but what they did find is that I have some deep chronic parasitic infections one which attacks the gut lining and is deeply imbedded and is not treatable with normal antiparasitic's, one that is attacking my liver and one my kidneys.
So if untreated I could potentially be headed towards liver and kidney disease, and kidney disease is irreversible. Since the liver and kidneys have not been functioning properly all these years it makes sense that I can't detox properly, process things properly, etc.
As some of you may know because I brought it up in the past, I have been struggling with my liver and kidney function for many many years.
This help explains a lot of why all the autoimmune overreaction, the fatigue, swelling and other symptoms are not getting completely better even though the Lyme seems to be under control. (although Bartonella, a lyme co-infection did show up as still active). Getting treatment for the Lyme and coinfections has made huge difference, but there was still more to deal with.
All the mast cell overactivation disorder and other autoimmune issues cannot get better until this is dealt with.
Good news is that it is treatable with some specific medications they have developed at this university that does the testing. Bad news is it is $2,300 for the first round of 21 day treatment, and when I am done with that they have to retest and usually they have to do a second round of treatment at the same cost. (The test is also $788).
And that is just me! I think our entire family needs to be tested (Holly already has and will be getting treatment too). The costs are big, but God is bigger.
I am asking God to do some miraculous things and we shall see how He provides.

We could of course also use prayer in all of this, for healing and provision.
As a quick aside I could also use prayer that I don't at any time have a stroke of blood clot as one effect of all this autoimmune activity is that my blood is thicker than it should be and puts me at risk of clot and stroke. I am on some things to counteract this but I'm still at risk.


If any is able or know anyone who is, any financial help would be a blessing:

Posted on February 21, 2016

Posted on February 21, 2016

It has been a little while since I have updated this site. It has been a really rough couple months and I have been pretty down physically.
It is really hard to describe what it feels like when things get bad like I've been experiencing, because it's not as simple as "I don't feel well"; my sense of reality gets really screwed and I don't feel myself at all. A lot of what makes me "me" sort of falls away. I think it might be brain inflammation because I know that I get brain inflammation when the rest of my body is inflamed. I have been doing my best to fight through it, but it's been rough.
The great news is I have felt a shift in my body for the better the last several days. This is another thing I can't quite describe because it's nothing I'm doing differently, it's just a shift that feels as if someone has been pinning you against the ground and then finally lets you up. 

The main reason I started this page is because I've been struggling financially due to being unable to work full time and having expenses and bills that are beyond me. I am still in need of help and today I pointedly wanted to ask help for something I've been unable to do; Shiloh has never had her teeth cleaned since I've gotten her and I've been more and more concerned about her dental health. Being a small dog with smaller bone structure she is at more risk of losing teeth and infection.
i am going to do my best to save to have this done but I am also going to ask for help if anyone is able for my special little therapy dog :)

Posted on January 20, 2016

Posted on January 20, 2016

Still trying to pull out of the blahs that I have been struggling against these past few weeks. I came to the realization of a few things the other day; I have been turning to chocolate (again) for energy and because I have been craving it. This really is a vicious cycle because although it temporarily makes me feel good it causes a vicious cycle of inflammation and reaction in my body ?? And I eat the good stuff! You know, the all-natural dark kind with no unhealthy additives.... Doesn't matter.
Anyway there is that, plus I am a week overdue for my IV, AND I went and let myself run out of my iron, B complex and methylation supplements. Partly because a friend while praying over my situation recommended stopping some treatments and praying that God would fill in the gap, partly because they are expensive and I hate seeing the price when I order them, and partly just because I'm sick of taking them.
In any case I am still coming to an end with this more intensive treatment protocol which is great, and I am excited for more vivacious days ahead.

In the mean time finances have as predicted been a greater struggle and I am asking God to help fill in the gaps.
I also had a filling fall out of a tooth last week and need to get it fixed.
So prayer for all of the above and of course for any that are called to help I would be humbly blessed.

~Love, Jennifer

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